If you have a water meter, your bills are based on how much water you've used and how much wastewater we've taken away to clean. It also includes standing charges.
Here's how your charges are worked out
First of all, you should know that your water meter records all the water that you use in 'cubic metres'. A cubic metre is 1,000 litres of water and we calculate your bill based on the amount of cubic metres you have used since your last bill.
A cubic metre of water provides enough water for 13 baths or 28 showers or 111 toilet flushes.
Jill Marshall from United Utilities pictured next to a water butt containing 1 cubic metre of water.
In simple terms you pay for the following services...
Supplying clean water to your home
This charge is for collecting, storing, cleaning and delivering water to your home, and is calculated based on your meter reading, as explained above.
Taking away all your wastewater (which we call sewerage services)
This charge is for taking away and cleaning all your dirty water and is also based on the amount of water you've used in cubic metres. This is because the majority of the water we supply to your home goes down your plugholes and toilets and back into the public sewer for us to take away, treat and return safely to rivers and the sea. If you can show that more than 5 per cent of the water that we supply to your home does not return to the public sewer, then you can claim a reduction on your sewerage charges. Our claim form explains this in greater detail (PDF 186 KB opens in a new window)
Taking away rainwater
This is a fixed annual charge for the collection and treatment of all the rainwater that falls on your home and the public highway. This is shown on your bill as 'surface water/highway drainage'. If your home is not connected to a public sewer to drain away your rainwater (for example, all your surface water drains to a soakaway instead) then you can claim a reduction in your bill. For further details visit our 'surface water and highway drainage' section.
You also pay us a standing charge for essential services. This is a fixed annual charge associated with the costs of providing our services and is shared amongst all our customers.
Why not take a look at our video to see how we calculate your bill?
Use less, save more
As you have a water meter, your bill is calculated based on how much water you use. One of the easiest ways to reduce your bill is to use water wisely in the home and garden. See how you can save water and money with free gadgets, and useful hints and tips for avoiding waste.
Having problems paying your bill?
If you're having problems paying your bill, we're here to listen and will work out a way to help. Please visit our 'difficulty paying your water bill' section for full details.
Our service to you
For further details about the services we provide, together with an explanation of what you pay for, take a look at our information leaflet which is sent to you once a year with your bill (PDF 2,165 KB opens in a new window).